iPhone, iPad (via Apple Arcade); Clap Hanz
Exuberant presentation and a fast-moving conveyor belt of small challenges get this golf game off to a flying start
It doesn’t matter whether you like the sport or not; golf video games are universally appealing. The objective is obvious, the basic act of hitting a ball is tactile and satisfying, and there’s a clear path to mastery as you learn conditions and make better shot choices. Clap Hanz, the Japanese developer behind this new Apple Arcade title, has been making PlayStation games called Everybody’s Golf for 20 years. You will either love the wacky presentation or hate it – it’s all horn-rimmed grandmas, emo kids and tourists with comically high waistlines – but if you accept the silliness on its own terms, it pays you back in spades.
Everybody’s Golf relied on well-timed button presses to execute a perfect swing, but the transition to iOS brings touch controls. When you’ve chosen your club and pointed where you want the ball to go, you draw your finger back and then jerk it forward in a straight line to let rip. When you whip your digit clear of the screen, they lean into the follow-through, and the pair of you stare ahead to see whether you hit straight and true.